Thursday, Oct 23, 2014

I wasn’t feeling nervous until I saw size of crowd: Brendon McCullum

Brendon McCullum, center, celebrates with team members after their series win over India on the final day of the second Test at the Basin Reserve in Wellington (AP) Brendon McCullum, center, celebrates with team members after their series win over India on the final day of the second Test at the Basin Reserve in Wellington (AP)
Press Trust of India | Wellington | Posted: February 18, 2014 6:30 pm

Brendon McCullum became the first New Zealand batsman to score a triple hundred and the New Zealand skipper said the epic innings will be etched in his memory for the rest of his life.

McCullum spoke at length about his record-breaking 302 runs against India in the second Test, preventing the visitors from drawing level in the series. The Black Caps won the first Test in Auckland by 40 runs, and with it the series 1-0.

“My innings was what was required at that stage (94/5). We were obviously scrapping to save the Test and therefore win the series, and we managed to get some partnerships under pressure. And then kept batting and batting and batting. So it was pretty satisfying to get us out of trouble and claim the series win,” said McCullum after the match ended.

McCullum’s innings was the highest score for a New Zealand batsman in a Test innings, overtaking Martin Crowe’s 299 against Sri Lanka, also scored at the same ground in 1991.

He became the 24th batsman in the history of Test cricket to score a triple-hundred and join this exclusive club.

“I wasn’t feeling nervous until I saw the size of the crowd. That’s probably when I understood the magnitude of the task at hand and the immense joy it gives fans of this cricket team to see guys succeed and see records broken,” he said.

“It was a moment, when the 300 came up and the applause was ongoing for quite a while, it is really when it hit home to me that it was quite a significant achievement for a New Zealander and I’ll certainly remember them for the rest of my life,” he added.

Despite the achievement, McCullum was humble at his success and said that he was not as talented as the legends of New Zealand cricket.

“Without being disrespectful I probably didn’t know the magnitude of it until the last 24 hours. I grew up and watched the New Zealand cricket team for years,” he said.

“I watched Martin Crowe score his 299 and thought it would have been an amazing feat if he scored 300 but probably didn’t quite understand how much it meant to the whole country who support this team. I also spoke to Stephen Fleming last night. I feel a little bit embarrassed because I’m nowhere near the calibre of players they were.”

McCullum became the second-ever New Zealand batsman to cross the 200-run mark in a Test innings thrice, after Fleming.

The 32-year-old shared a record 352-run partnership for the sixth wicket with BJ Watling and then James Neesham smacked a maiden Test hundred on debut to further continued…

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